The Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) and UNICEF yesterday signed a Memorandum of Understanding to support Ghanaian entrepreneurs and startup businesses with a funding support of $ 2.2 million dollars.
The project, which aimed to accelerate entrepreneurship and innovation, will be implemented from 2022 to 2026 with the funds from KOICA to support UNICEF Startups Lab programme.
The UNICEF startups Lab programme is an initiative that engages Ghanaian startups to develop solutions to problems which impact the wellbeing of children and young people, especially the most vulnerable.
Speaking at the signing ceremony in Accra, the Country Director for KOICA-Ghana, Mr Mooheon Kong, who signed on behalf of KOICA said, the project was expected to increase the knowledge and capacity of businesses that develop tech-driven solutions that could succeed in the marketplace.
He explained that the MOU would focus on Information and Communications Technology (ICT) driven programmes to provide solutions to significant challenges in society, to help augment the government’s digitalisation efforts.
“Through this project, opportunities will be given to young social impact innovators and entrepreneurs to receive the needed support to thrive and to contribute to the socio-economic development agenda of Ghana,” Mr Kong said.
He believed that the partnership with UNICEF and its linkages with the Ghana-Korea Centre of Excellence for ICT-based Startups, would be pivotal in building up future ICT entrepreneurs to lead the socio-economic development for Ghana.
The Country Representative of UNICEF Ghana, Ms Anne-Claire Dufay, who signed on behalf of UNICEF said, one of UNICEF priorities had been to promote access to learning, skills and livelihood opportunities for adolescents and young people in Ghana.
She explained that since 2019, UNICEF had been supporting social impact startups through the UNICEF Startups Lab which focused on social impact innovators who develop solutions to core development issues, such as health, education, climate, and employability.
The Director of Centre of Asian Studies at the University of Ghana, Dr Lloyd G. Adu Amoah, thanked KOICA and UNICEF for their tremendous support to young graduates in developing their ideas into reality.
BY BERNARD BENGHAN